Quick Art Stop with Eric Velasquez

h1 June 23rd, 2010 by jules


“‘Très bien, très bien,
Mes amis!’”

(Click to enlarge spread.)

I know lots of folks are getting ready to conference away this week, which is ever-so exciting and I wish I were travelling there myself. Instead, I offer you a quick art stop with Eric Velasquez, which is a wonderful alternative for me. If I can’t be at ALA, I can at least show you Eric’s shimmering oil paintings from Cheryl Willis Hudson’s My Friend Maya Loves to Dance (Abrams, April 2010).

This rhyming picture book is told from the perspective of Maya’s unseen friend — unseen until the final page, that is, in which a sort of twist is offered up. A surprise. I won’t tell, of course, in case you want to discover this for yourself. Maya loves all kinds of dance, and the book primarily explores what those types are: Ballet, tap, you-name-it. She likes to move to Bach, reggae, the sounds of cellos and trumpets, and gospel, and she loves to dance in her kente cloth, leotard and tutu, and choir robe. School Library Journal calls this a “simple, sweet story about music, dance, and friendship,” and Kirkus calls it simply a “poetic love note.”

A few more spreads …. Enjoy!


“My friend Maya loves to tap / On slick wooden floors
To jazz, blues, and rap. / She dances in the hall, / In church . . .”

(Click to enlarge spread.)


“My friend Maya loves the sounds / Of cellos and trumpets / And drums all around.”
(Click to enlarge spread.)


“She waits by the wall / For the next curtain call /
Dancing’s fantastic. / Maya loves it all.

(Click to enlarge spread.)

* * * * * * *

MY FRIEND MAYA LOVES TO DANCE. Copyright © 2010 by Cheryl Willis Hudson. Illustration copyright © 2010 Eric Velasquez. Published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, New York, NY.





5 comments to “Quick Art Stop with Eric Velasquez”

  1. Wow, gorgeous illustrations! I actually thought the first picture was a photograph when I first saw it. I’ll have to keep my eye out for this one!


  2. Jules, I have really been enjoying your posts lately. Not that you need it, but I gave you a blog award today–here’s the post: http://bookaunt.blogspot.com/2010/06/blogger-award-thank-you.html.


  3. Hello Jules,

    Thanks so much for posting this preview. As an author who also wears editorial and publishing hats, I can’t tell you how delighted I am with my collaboration with Eric Velasquez. A successful and effective picture book is really a team effort and Eric brought so much power and “shimmer” to my words and vision. Abrams did a magnificent job in packaging the finish work as well. Please keep blogging and sharing your insights into children’s literature. Yours is an important contribution.

    CWH.


  4. Cheryl, thanks so much! So good to see you stop by. Maybe one day you can stop by for a longer chat here at the blog, if you’re so inclined….thanks for making such great books.


  5. [...] MY FRIEND MAYA LOVES TO DANCE. Copyright © 2010 by Cheryl Willis Hudson. Illustration copyright © 2010 Eric Velasquez. Published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, New York, NY. These images re-posted here from this earlier 7-Imp post. [...]


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